Monday, 23 July 2012

Firefox spreading gay propaganda?

I ran the browser today (didn't run it for quite some time), and the first thing i see is the slogan:

Now get the mobile browser that’s got your back.

Am i supposed to feel comfortable having a gay browser in my phone (that is, in my back pocket, close to my ass)?

Saturday, 14 July 2012

Facebook is the new Big Brother

I don't even know if i have to mention this. Some time ago, facebook had changed all email addresses to be by default. Then they screwed up with API which basically erased everyone's emails from phone contacts and replaced it with that new @facebook email. Now facebook is beta-testing its automagic crime detector that basically scans all communication on facebook (including private messages and, apparently, email) and looks for "suspicious activity". I rest my case. I left facebook long ago. You want to trust your private life to a private corporation - go for it.

Saturday, 7 July 2012


I don't normally talk about TV shows. Simply because i have no TV at home and the only TV shows i ever watch are the oldies like X-Files, Psi Factor, Poltergeist: The Legacy and stuff like that. I make an exception every once in a while - Californication is a insanely cool series with Fox Mulder and lots of tits. And recently i made an exception for Fringe as well. (a friend of mine recommended to check out Big Bang Theory, and i honestly tried to watch it but it turns out i fucking hate the fake audience laughs so much i actually can't concentrate on the show itself)

Fringe were a good series. I won't talk about how this or that wasn't quite scientific, or plausible, or whatever. I have a far higher tolerance for quasi-scientific bullshit, if it goes along with the plot and fits into the setting well. I am OK with a scientist who was participating in every conceivable secret military experiment in the world, spent 16 years in a nuthouse and came out all fine and dandy. I am OK with the concept of only having two parallel universes. I am OK even with rewriting parts of the plot with a cheap move of "removing Peter Bishop from time".

What i am not OK with is logic errors. Whatever the insane bullshit story you tell, there's gotta be logic and consistency. Here are some of the most outrageous things i've noticed (there's many more of them i missed):

  • Walternate is a nice guy? Sorry, but Walternate once sacrificed Col. Broyles to get what he wanted. This man is evil. And suddenly, some time in Season 4 we discover that he's actually not that bad and overall a good and trustworthy fella? Sorry, i don't buy that.
  • Nina Sharp from alternate universe after Peter's erasure (season 4). Why did she appear? From where? What was her agenda? What's her back story? She suddenly appears, does some bad shit, and quickly dies. That's not how it's done, JJ.
  • Observers taking over the Earth? This is CHEAP. They don't feel emotions anyway - why the fuck would they need girls, money, or power? It's so downright silly it's painful and insulting.
  • September seeing all the futures but couldn't predict the one he was shot in? Bullshit. Bonus points for some shit "technology" to draw a symbol to hold him in one place that can be disabled by simply erasing the sign.
  • William Bell suddenly appears, and he is being evil and playing God? Without any mention of William Bell's fate throughout season 4? In one of the previous seasons, he fucking sacrificed himself to save Olivia and others - and now he's a lunatic that wants to destroy everything and everyone? Please.
  • In season 4, in the alternate timeline, there was no Peter. Peter was the primary reason why Olivias have swapped places and then came to hate each other. So, with Peter gone, why do they still hate each other?
This is just the tip of the iceberg. Congratulations, JJ, you've ruined a good quasi-sci-fi series.

Friday, 6 July 2012

Keeping up with times

While i wasn't writing too much for a while, don't think for a moment that i was living under the rock. Since my last post (well, excluding Linux one) a lot of interesting stuff happened. Suffice to say that the world today is not the world it was six months ago. Yes, i'm referring to SOPA/PIPA/ACTA/TPP/CISPA/etc.etc.etc.

I am happy and cheering for the people who fought SOPA/PIPA. No, really, as much as i hate people, i can say that they've done mostly good job showing RIAA/MPAA who's the boss here. I'd like to think that they have learned their lesson, but that would be too much to ask, and the fact that they haven't changed their ways for ACTA and TPP shows that. ACTA is in a funny situation because USA has written and signed this document, but now that no one else has signed up for this, USA is pretty much the only country who signed ACTA.

Now we've got this TPP thing going. It's even more secretive than ACTA, and between countries questioning their participation in TPP, and US public figures' outright lies and corruption surrounding this international agreement, i think it's safe to say that this cancer must be eradicated the same way SOPA/PIPA/ACTA was. Recent events and news suggest that there may have been a change of heart in TPP negotiations, but i don't trust neither USTR (MPAA's bitch) nor other countries' discretion (USA's bitches). It will be interesting to see how this pans out though.

Cybermeanwhile, cybersecurity cyberis cybersorta cyberbig cybertoo. Cyberthere cyberwas cyberthis cyberanother cyberbill cybercalled cyberCISPA, cyberwhich cyberfocuses cyberon cyberhow cybermuch cyberwe cyberneed cybersecurity. Cyberin cyberorder cyberto cyberbend cyberpublic cyberopinion, cyberthere cyberhas cyberbeen cybera cyberlot cyberof cyberfear cybermongering cybergoing cyberon cyberabout cyberplanes cyberfalling cyberfrom cyberthe cybersky cyberand cyberall cybersorts cyberof cyber9/11'ish cyberstuff. Cyberi cybermust cybersay cyberthat cyberUS cyberpublic cyberis cyberso cyberdumb cyberthat cyberit cyberactually cyberbought cyberit, cyberand cybernow cyberpublic cyberpolls cybershow cyberthat cyberthey cyberfear cyberattacks cybermore cyberthan cyberterrorism. Cybercan cyberyou cyberfucking cyberbelieve cyberthat?! Meanwhile, cybersecurity is sorta big too. There was this another bill called CISPA, which focuses on how much we need cybersecurity. In order to bend public opinion, there has been a lot of fear mongering going on about planes falling from the sky and all sorts of 9/11'ish stuff. I must say that US public is so dumb that it actually bought it, and now public polls show that they fear cyberattacks more than terrorism. Can you fucking believe that?!

By the way, the previous paragraph is pretty much how US politicians talk about "cybersecurity". Throw in "cyber" here and there, and you're got yourself a new "threat" (not that terrorism ever was a threat!). They even went as far as offered a new role, someone-something-blah-blah on cyber-issues. Cyber-fucking-issues?! Any one with half a brain cell would understand that to not have power grids hacked you have to disconnect the fucking power grids from the Internet, but there's no money in that. Anonymous hacking power grids (lolwut?), scary Iranian Chinese Russian North Korean hackers (i am surprised they didn't invent cyber-Al Qaeda yet), what else? Oh yes, imaginary threats warrant surveilance society. Great. Anyways, i sincerely hope that nothing too bad comes out of it. I don't even expect them to make something good (for a nice change), just please, for God's sakes, at least don't break anything!

USA looks especially ironic in this particular case, because there has been two very high profile malware attacks on the Middle East - the Stuxnet and the Flame malware. If you don't know what that is - Google it, don't be a lazy ass. These malware attacks were actually carried out by USA. And now we fear that maybe - just maybe! - someone would perhaps strike back? How can you even justify these sorts of things? Whether the target is evil or not is irrelevant - malware attacks are illegal. Or is it only illegal and immoral whenever someone beside USA does it?

On a bright side, there's been a few booming Kickstarter projects - Wasteland 2, Double Fine, a few others... It's great to see this thing gaining traction. There were also some high profile lawsuits towards major music labels which further expose sleazy tactics the labels are using to avoid paying out artists they so proudly claim to "support". Fresh from the harvest is Def Leppard making covers on their own songs and basically recreating their entire discography so that they can get royalties out of the label.

And don't forget this whole Carreon/Oatmeal saga. It's so fucking retarded it's not even funny. FunnyJunk and Carreon, bravo, you are the worst morons i've ever seen. I mean, how can you be so fucking stupid to sue a guy who's raising money for charity?!

So, the world has changed. But at the same time, it largely stays the same.

Linux sucks!

First of all, sorry for not annoying you with much posts lately, been a little busy moving to a different place and settling in. I hate moving, i hate all this anxiety, i hate when a steady rhythm of my life is anally raped like this, but i guess that's life.

Now, Linux sucks. Yes, this is going to be a yet another post on how Linux sucks, with me bringing arguments about Linux while still assuring that i'm a fucking Linux zealot, advocate and whatnot. Yep, just like that, let's get it out of the way. I love Linux. I use it as my everyday OS, i occasionally do some development on Linux, i happen to feel comfortable in the command-line, et cetera, et cetera. That's all great.

But there's a big butt! For starters, i'm tired of and frustrated with Kubuntu. I've been using Kubuntu since, well, practically the day it showed up on the radar. I used it through 7.x series, through 8.x, through 9.x series, through 10.x series, through 11.x series, but i will not use 12.04. At least not as my main system. I'm moving to Chakra Linux. Why? Because Kubuntu is so god damn sluggish it's unbelievable. It literally crawls like a snail. Plus, i'm a bit of an adventure guy, i like adding PPA's and testing semi-stable packages. The problem with that of course is that every once in a while everything breaks. Yes, it's my own fault, but i don't care. Chakra manages to run testing branches of KDE4 without depriving me of graphical desktop every so often, so it's not like it's impossible.

The only successful upgrade to a new release i've had ever was from 10.10 to 11.04. This was Kubuntu at its best - not only it didn't break anything, it actually made things better! Not a single upgrade before or since was clean and easy - every time i had to shoot adrenaline into the kernel to bring the system up again. During big updates package manager often hangs and does nothing. Lately it's been hanging on the very last step of updates (processing triggers or something). Whether it's Muon or KPackageKit it doesn't matter - it still sucks.

Fonts. Fonts fucking suck. After - what, twenty? thirty? - years of this phrase first appearing on a public internet, it's still true. Fonts suck in Linux. I don't care that i can make them not suck, that i can edit zillion config files and install some shit just to display fonts properly - i don't give a fuck. When i install Windows, i don't fiddle with fonts. Why should i do so here?

Open Source projects. Some of them are pretty awesome, most of them suck. LibreOffice? Big fat sluggish piece of shit. Firefox? Don't get me started. The GNOME software camp? Fucking abomination. GNOME is a disease, a cancer on a free software movement. GCC? If this is the best compiler the community is capable of producing... Well, i rest my case. KDE software and KDE-related stuff (e.g. ownCloud) is probably the only worthwhile FLOSS software around, and it's not without its problems either.

Sound. SOUND!!!! How many god damn sound frameworks is enough?! OK, things have been slowly moving towards PulseAudio lately, and with version 4 my Skype is finally able to work properly without taking over my sound hardware or closing YouTube just to make a fucking call. But no pro sound so far. JACK is great as a framework but the drivers for anything remotely professional suck big time. Yes, i know it's not the fault of Linux community, but who the fuck cares? I still can't use neither FFADO nor any of the USB drivers. I keep a Windows installation just so i can record stuff properly.

Graphics. Yep, nouveau is making progress (dunno what's up with ATI, i haven't used a single Radeon in years), but gaming and GPU acceleration on Linux still sucks balls. You know what? I've decided to stick with Intel integrated graphics for the foreseeable future. Yes, i got myself the newest ballsiest Ivy Bridge Core i7, an equally ballsy Z77 motherboard, and that's it. No discrete graphics, fuck em all.

Pro software. Suffice to say, the ones that are worth something either are/were commercial (think Blender), ugly, messy and useless (yo GIMP, how's your CMYK support?), or simply crashy or amateurish (pretty much everything else). And we still wonder why, oh why didn't Linux take over the world...